- Jacques Villeneuve will attempt to make Indianapolis 500 starts 19 years apart, bettering Cy Marshall & Roland Free's 17-year gap set in 1947.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Jewel To Sing National Anthem

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3-time Grammy nominee, Jewel, has signed on to sing the National Anthem at the 94th Indianapolis 500 on May 30th. The Utah native who grew up in Alaska will celebrate her birthday on Bump Day, just one week before the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

Other notable events include:

"On the Banks of the Wabash" - Purdue University Band
"America the Beautiful" - Major Lisa Kopczynski
"God Bless America" - Florence Henderson
National Anthem - Jewel
Invocation - Archbishop Daniel Buechlein
"Back Home Again in Indiana" - Jim Nabors
"Ladies and Gentlemen, Start Your Engines" - Mari Hulman George

ESPN Classic May Schedule

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Andretti Autosport Signs Carroll

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27-year-old Adam Carroll has signed with Andretti Autosport. The northern Ireland native will run a Honda-Powered Dallara in an unknown number of races in the second half of the IZOD IndyCar Series Season, in a yet to be determined number. Carroll's past experience includes 3-season in GP2 and he winning 4 races on his way to the A1GP championship in 2009

"I'm very excited to be joining the driver lineup at Andretti Autosport. It is gratifying to know that the success I've enjoyed so far in my career has drawn the attention of a team owner like Michael Andretti. The IZOD IndyCar Series is clearly one of the most competitive formulas in the world right now and I'm looking forward to being introduced into the field later this year." - Adam Carroll

"We're very excited that Adam is on board. He is a special talent and someone who we believe will have a bright future with us at Andretti Autosport. It was important for us to give him an opportunity this year and start building for the years to come. I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do later this year." - Michael Andretti

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Mona Vie Back With Scheckter

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After first gracing the sidepods of Tomas Scheckter's Dale Coyne Racing Dallara last year at Indianapolis, before moving with the IndyCar vet to Dreyer & Reinbold, the beverage company will return this year. It was confirmed today that MonaVie will be the primary sponsor for Tomas Scheckter and the #23 Honda-Powered Dallara Indianapolis 500 entry.

IRL Announces 3 Champion Format

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The IZOD IndyCar Series announced today that beginning this season, both an oval and road/street course champion will be crowned in addition to the overall champ. On August 22nd at Infineon Raceway, the last twisty in 2010, and on September 19th after Twin Ring Motegi, the 2nd to last oval, the highest-scoring driver in each of the respective categories will be honored. The season finale at Homestead-Miami will not be included in the oval championship, and instead will be used to crown the overall IZOD IndyCar Series Champion.

In addition to a monetary prize that will be announced at a later date, the top dog in each discipline will receive a trophy, each of which will be named by the fans. Media reps will nominate both oval and road/street course legends, the top-five nominees from each genre will be posted on IndyCar.com for the fans to vote. The oval championship trophy name will be announced at the Texas Motor Speedway in early June, and the twisty trophy honoree will be announced at Watkins Glen International in early July.

"The IZOD IndyCar Series offers one of the most challenging and diverse schedules in all of motorsports. We want to recognize the drivers that master the disciplines that make up this sport as they pursue the ultimate prize - the IZOD IndyCar Series championship. We feel this platform will give added value to events on our schedule and creates more momentum behind the drivers and teams that excel at ovals and road races.

The sport of Indy car racing has such a long and storied legacy of so many accomplished legends that we feel this is a great way to honor their accomplishments. Many of our current drivers admire these legends, so why not have them vie for a trophy named in honor of the drivers they strive to emulate." - IRL CEO, Randy Bernard

Monday, April 26, 2010

Make Your Pick

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The 5th round of the 16th And Georgetown Fantasy League presented by the Indy Racing Experience is underway. Your selection for the Kansas 300 can be made HERE.

Fantasy League Top 10:
  1. Ray B. - 10
  2. Luke B. - 11
  3. Paul W. - 12
  4. Matt A. - 14
  5. Joshua J. - 14
  6. Tom M. - 14
  7. Craig S. - 15
  8. Andrew W. - 15
  9. Tonya F. - 15
  10. Joe L. - 16

Kansas Entry List

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IZOD IndyCar Series 27 cars:
#2 Raphael Matos - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#3 Helio Castroneves - Team Penske
#4 Dan Wheldon - Panther Racing
#5 Takuma Sato - KV Racing Technology
#6 Ryan Briscoe - Team Penske
#7 Danica Patrick - Andretti Autosport
#8 E.J. Viso -KV Racing Technology
#9 Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#10 Dario Franchitti - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#11 Tony Kanaan - Andretti Autosport
#12 Will Power - Verizon Team Penske
#14 Vitor Meira - A.J. Foyt Enterprises
#18 Milka Duno - Dale Coyne Racing
#19 Alex Lloyd - Dale Coyne Racing
#22 Justin Wilson -DRR
#24 Mike Conway -DRR
#26 Marco Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#32 Mario Moraes - KV Racing Technology
#34 Mario Romancini - Conquest Racing
#36 Bertrand Baguette - Conquest Racing
#37 Ryan Hunter-Reay -Andretti Autosport
#43 John Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#66 Jay Howard - Sarah Fisher Racing
#67 Sarah Fisher - Sarah Fisher Racing
#77 Alex Tagliani -FAZZT Race Team
#78 Simona De Silvestro - HVM Racing
#06 Hideki Mutoh - NHL

Changes from Long Beach: Howard and John Andretti added. Fisher replaces Rahal

Friday, April 23, 2010

Scheckter Confirmed For '500'

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As first reported by the Indianapolis Star's Curt Cavin, Tomas Scheckter has signed on to pilot a Dreyer & Reinbold entry in this years Indianapolis 500. Scheckter, 29, will run the #23 Honda Powered-Dallara, in his 9th '500' with the 7th different team. The sponsorship announcement for the #23 car, and 3rd DRR entry, is set for Tuesday.

“We are excited to have Tomas join our team for the Indy 500. He did a great job for us last year and we are extremely happy that we were able to work something out with him for this event,” - Dreyer & Reinbold co-owner, Dennis Reinbold

“I’m really happy to be back with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and to be working with Larry Curry again. I feel at home. We had a great Indy test at the end of last year and I feel that the momentum that the team has built on the road/street courses with Mike and Justin we can carry that on to the ovals. Also, having Justin as my teammate last year at Indy, we worked very well together. Dennis and Robbie have been very supportive of getting this done and feel like we have a chance to do great things this year at the speedway,” - Tomas Scheckter

Thursday, April 22, 2010

NHL Renamed

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UPDATE 4-23 3:02am: Mike Lanigan has been removed from the Newman/Haas Website
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It has been announced late Thursday night that Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing has been renamed. Beginning immediately the team will be known as Newman/Haas Racing.

When asked if the 'L' in NHL, Mike Lanigan, has left the organization a team rep responded with only:
"Our team name has returned to Newman/Haas Racing. I am not at liberty to
elaborate"

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Indy 500 Entry List

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78 total cars, 40 not counting T's, 34 Drivers:
#2 Raphael Matos - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#2T Raphael Matos - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#3 Helio Castroneves - Team Penske
#3T Helio Castroneves - Team Penske
#4 Dan Wheldon - Panther Racing
#4T Dan Wheldon - Panther Racing
#5 Takuma Sato - KV Racing Technology
#5T Takuma Sato - KV Racing Technology
#6 Ryan Briscoe - Team Penske
#6T Ryan Briscoe - Team Penske
#7 Danica Patrick - Andretti Autosport
#7T Danica Patrick - Andretti Autosport
#8 E.J. Viso -KV Racing Technology
#8T E.J. Viso -KV Racing Technology
#9 Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#9T Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#10 Dario Franchitti - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#10T Dario Franchitti - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#11 Tony Kanaan - Andretti Autosport
#11T Tony Kanaan - Andretti Autosport
#12 Will Power - Verizon Team Penske
#12T Will Power - Verizon Team Penske
#14 Vitor Meira - A.J. Foyt Racing
#14T Vitor Meira - A.J. Foyt Racing
#15 Paul Tracy - KV Racing Technology
#15T Paul Tracy - KV Racing Technology
#16 TBA - A.J. Foyt Racing
#16T TBA - A.J. Foyt Racing
#17 TBA - Rahal Letterman Racing
#17T TBA - Rahal Letterman Racing
#18 Milka Duno - Dale Coyne Racing
#18T Milka Duno - Dale Coyne Racing
#19 Alex Lloyd - Dale Coyne Racing
#19T Alex Lloyd - Dale Coyne Racing
#20 Ed Carpenter - Vision/Panther Racing
#20T Ed Carpenter - Vision/Panther Racing
#21 Davey Hamilton - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#21T Davey Hamilton - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#22 Justin Wilson - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#22T Justin Wilson - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#23 TBA - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#23T TBA - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#24 Mike Conway - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#24T Mike Conway - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#25 TBA - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#25T TBA - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
#26 Marco Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#26T Marco Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#27 TBA - AFS Racing
#29 Sebastian Saavedra - Bryan Herta Autosport
#32 Mario Moraes - KV Racing Technology
#32T Mario Moraes - KV Racing Technology
#33 Bruno Junqueira - FAZZT
#33T Bruno Junqueira - FAZZT
#34 Mario Romancini - Conquest Racing
#34T Mario Romancini - Conquest Racing
#36 Bertrand Baguette - Conquest Racing
#36T Bertrand Baguette - Conquest Racing
#37 Ryan Hunter-Reay -Andretti Autosport
#37T Ryan Hunter-Reay -Andretti Autosport
#41 A.J. Foyt IV - A.J. Foyt Racing
#41T A.J. Foyt IV - A.J. Foyt Racing
#43 John Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#43T John Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#66 Jay Howard - Sarah Fisher Racing
#66T Jay Howard - Sarah Fisher Racing
#67 Sarah Fisher - Sarah Fisher Racing
#67T Sarah Fisher - Sarah Fisher Racing
#77 Alex Tagliani -FAZZT Race Team
#77T Alex Tagliani -FAZZT Race Team
#78 Simona De Silvestro - HVM Racing
#78T Simona De Silvestro - HVM Racing
#98 TBA - Team 3G
#98T TBA - Team 3G
#99 Townsend Bell - SSM/TCGR
#99T Townsend Bell - SSM/TCGR
#06 Hideki Mutoh - NHL
#06T Hideki Mutoh - NHL

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Ratings Are In

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The ratings for Sunday's Long Beach Grand Prix are in, and they're quite positive. According to Nielsen Media Research, the VERSUS race scored a .5, making it the highest rated race in the networks short history. With an average of 490,000 viewers from 3-6pm, the ratings peaked at 525,000 and a .6 rating during the race.

According to the IRL:

VERSUS' first three races of the 2010 season, as compared to the same number of live events last season, have grown 67 percent in household ratings (.5 vs..3) and 30 percent in average viewers (404,000 vs. 310,000).

Additionally, viewership among all key male demographics is also
showing substantial growth: Men 18-34 (up 104 percent), Men 18-49 (up 38
percent) and Men 25-54 (up 60 percent).

Monday, April 19, 2010

Q&A With Randy Bernard

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(Photos courtesy of the IZOD IndyCar Series)
16th And Georgetown: You’re obviously going to experience a lot over the next year or so, what are some of the events that you’re most looking forward to in 2010?

Randy Bernard: The experience I’m most looking forward to is the Indianapolis 500. I continue to hear what an unbelievable and life-changing type of an event it is. I think that it’s going to be even more exciting this year because we’ll have a minimum of 40 cars trying to qualify, which we haven’t seen in almost 15 years. It shows another wave in momentum as our sport continues to grow.

16th And Georgetown: You've mentioned in previous interviews that you plan on visiting the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum quite often. Have you had the chance to do so? If so, what were some of the highlights?

Randy Bernard: I’ve been to the Museum three times and spent between five and a half, six hours over there. Actually, I’m planning on attending (Speedway historian) Donald Davidson’s class. Unfortunately, I had a big meeting and missed the first two-hour class. I think it would be very good for me to sit through the class and listen to what Donald has to say because I’ve learned so much from him in just the short time I’ve spent with him at the Museum. I think some of the things I take back from my visits to the Museum, as an outsider looking in at the tradition and culture, include how many legends we had from the ‘70s through the mid-90s, how big of a part of the sport they were and how of them all decided to retire within a 15-month time span. I think the other thing that lends itself very well over there is how open sourcing was back then, whether it was a diesel or a turbine or Mr. Penske’s Mercedes. That, to me, is so intriguing and shows what made the Indianapolis 500 so highly regarded to purists and enthusiasts for all of those years.

16th And Georgetown: After looking over the 2010 schedule, there are 17 races spread across 13 different start times, making it difficult for the casual fan to find the series every weekend. Obviously the television partners have a lot of say, but do you believe anything needs to be done to streamline the times a bit?

Randy Bernard: I think there’s a lot to be said for having a consistent time slot. I’m trying to get my arms around that right now. I understand that is a big part of our television partners’ decision. I think what is even more important is that we pick broadcast times that are not competing with other major events. For example, it was not ideal for the Barber weekend to be against Tiger Woods and the Masters. If we could have gone before or after, it would have been much better. I think there are a lot of things we have to take into consideration when picking our broadcast times.

16th And Georgetown: This season more than ever driver names have become quite prevalent on the rear wings, making it much easier for the casual fan to recognize who's in what car. Obviously it's expensive ad space that the teams would like to fill, but is there any chance that the Series would mandate the change?

Randy Bernard: I really like the drivers’ names on the rear wing. I asked 10 people to watch the Sao Paulo race that had never viewed an IZOD IndyCar Series race before. Four or five of them sent me an e-mail after the broadcast on what they liked and what they didn’t like. Ryan Hunter-Reay’s name came up several times and I asked why. They said it was because he was very easy to follow with his name on the rear wing. I thought that was very important feedback from people who had never watched a race before. We also received a lot of fan feedback in support of it.

After the Sao Paulo race, John Lewis (vice president of marketing and league development) sent an e-mail out to all of the team owners, telling them that we had great response from fans on it and encouraging them to utilize that space for driver recognition if it had not been sold to sponsors. I don’t think we’ll make it mandatory. We have to be very accommodating to the team owners as the rear wing is valuable real estate for sponsorship. I think that if there’s a way that drivers can negotiate that as part of their deal, I think it’s very advantageous to them, but I don’t think it something we are going to start dictating to team owners.

16th And Georgetown: In recent weeks details of the newly formed Chassis Committee have become clear, the members will decide upon a chassis and recommend it to yourself for the final decision. How likely is it that your final decision will be different than the committee's decision?

Randy Bernard: We released the final lineup of the ICONIC IndyCar Series Advisory Committee just a few days ago. I’ve said from day one that I’m way too na├»ve at this point to make a decision this big without input from experts. Those seven experts on the ICONIC Advisory Committee will be bringing me their collective recommendation. We have so many passionate people in our industry that it was very hard to narrow it down to just seven. I feel these seven experts are very open-minded and objective, which is one of the most important things to me in this process, and I think they will do a phenomenal job making a recommendation on the future car.

16th And Georgetown: Just after it was announced that you would become the new IRL CEO, Bill from Pressdog.com started up a campaign to get fans to send you letters with their thoughts and ideas. Since March 1st, when you took office, what kind of reaction have you received from the fans?

Randy Bernard: I have had a tremendous response from the fans and I love it. I’m getting so many e-mails that it’s going to take me a couple months to make sure that I’m accommodating everyone. I really enjoy reading fan letters and gauging their input, ideas and responses. I’ve received e-mails and letters on a variety of subjects from fans. As I said earlier, the rear wing was one example of a hot topic with fans. Other popular topics include suggestions on future race markets and the ICONIC IndyCar Series Advisory Committee as well as open versus sole sourcing. There’s a tremendous amount of e-mails and it’s been fantastic. I do prefer emails because they are very simple and I can read them very quickly. In fact, when I’m sitting on the airplane I’ll be going through all of the fan e-mails on my computer. I’m looking at creating a fan-specific e-mail address so I can have them housed all in one place. As soon as that’s set up we’ll be sure to get that out so fans know how to contact me.
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Huge thanks to Randy Bernard for taking the time out of his incredibly busy day to do the Q&A, and to the spectacular Amy Konrath of IndyCar PR for setting it up.

Friday, April 16, 2010

KVRT Confirms Tracy

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In a press conference held today at the Long Beach Grand Prix, KV Racing Technology confirmed Paul Tracy for the Indianapolis 500. The 41-year-old, Tracy will pilot the #15 Geico Honda-Powered Dallara at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May for his 7th attempt at the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

As of now Indianapolis is the only official race for the team, however, KV and Tracy are actively working on a program for the 2 Canadian races (Toronto & Edmonton) at a minimum.

“I want to thank Kevin Kalkhoven and Jimmy Vasser of KVRT and GEICO for the opportunity to return to the world’s biggest auto race. I have won races and championships at the top level during my racing career, but what I’m missing is a win at Indy.

I feel I have some unfinished business at the Brickyard and, with the support of GEICO and an outstanding team like KV Racing Technology, I feel good about our chances at this year’s ‘500.’ ’’ - Paul Tracy

“It is tremendous to bring Paul back to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway again this year. Paul was very competitive last year in the GEICO machine in his first Indy 500 in seven years. After last year’s return to the Speedway, we believe Paul will be a contender for the win.” - Jimmy Vasser

IRL Forms Technical Committee

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In the wake of the ICONIC Committee members announcement last week, a group put together to recommend the new 2012 formula to the Indy Racing League CEO Randy Bernard, another Committee has been formed. Effective immediately, the IRL has launched a "Technical Review Committee" which features league and team representatives who will hold weekly meetings to discuss and review all technical proposals submitted to the IZOD IndyCar Series. The committee members will then make a recommendation to the President of Competition and Racing Operations for the IRL, Brian Barnhart, who will make the final decision. All of the decisions made by Barnhart, as well as the proposals to the committee will be posted to a participant-only website, giving each team equal access to the rule interpretation information.

"Given the overwhelming positive response to the formation of the ICONIC Advisory Committee in the search for our next-generation car, we have decided to create a similar process for all technical proposals presented to the league that will allow discussion in a more transparent forum," - Brian Barnhart

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Lola Releases New Images

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Make Your Pick

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The 4th round of the 16th And Georgetown Fantasy League presented by the Indy Racing Experience is underway. Your selection for the Long Beach can be made HERE.

After three weeks, the standings are still very tight, but Luke B. is currently leading the pack all on his own with 7 points. Ray B. and Stephen K. are tied for 2nd with 8 points, Aaron R. holds down 4th position with 9 points and 6 players are tied for 5th with 11 points-a-piece.

"500" Qual Format Released

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After the infrastructure of the new Indianapolis 500 qualifying format leaked last week, today IMS made if official. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway now confirms that of the 33-car field, 24 positions will be filled on Pole Day. The cars will begin their 4-lap runs at 11am, with a deadline of 4pm, each car with up to 3 attempts.

The top 9 cars from the first session will then take to the track after a half-hour break, at 4:30pm, for a run at the pole. Once again, the Dallara's will make 4-lap runs, with each required to make at least 1 attempt in the 90-minute session, with one extra attempt possible if time permits. Each driver that enters "The Fast Nine" will be guaranteed a top 9 start in the race, no matter what happens in the 2nd session.

Not only is an increased monetary award now up for grabs, but for the first time all 33-positions will receive points toward the IZOD IndyCar Series Championship as well. The winner of the 2010 PEAK Performance Pole Award presented by AutoZone will earn $175,000 and 15 points, up from $100k last year. 2nd place will receive $75,000 and 13 points with the outside of row one qualifying team receiving $50,000 and 12 points. Teams from rows 2 & 3, positions 4-9, will earn between 11 and 6 points with positions 10-24 earning 4 points and 25-33 receiving 3 points.

The following day, Bump Day, the remaining 9 positions will be filled with 4-lap qualification runs beginning at 12pm (Noon) and ending with many hearts broken at 6pm when the checkered flag falls.

“This new format for Indianapolis 500 qualifying will deliver even more action and intensity for fans. Drivers will go all out during the first session on Pole Day to get a chance to make a run for the pole. Then they’ll need to dig even deeper to find the speed for the pole in the last 90 minutes. Plus there still will be plenty of spots up for grabs on Bump Day, with all of the dramatic, last-minute bumping that generations of fans have loved about Indy.

“This is going to be a fantastic weekend of qualifying. I can’t wait to see it unfold.” - IMS Corp. President and CEO, Jeff Belskus

“The rewards of the qualifying format help to make the Indianapolis 500 the most important race on the IZOD IndyCar Series schedule. Teams and drivers in the shootout will have to make a decision after their initial run in the ‘Fast Nine’ segment whether they want to attempt to move up on the grid with a final attempt. Not only would they potentially have a higher starting position, but they would accumulate more bonus points that could come into play later in the season in the driver championship.” - IRL President of Competition and Racing Operations, Brian Barnhart

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

ICONIC Committee Announced

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Today the CEO of the Indy Racing League, Randy Bernard, formally announced his 6 selections to the 7 member ICONIC (Innovative, Competitive, Open-Wheel, New, Industry-Relevant, Cost-Effective) committee, who's job it is to recommend the 2012 formula to the newly named CEO. Head-up by 4-Star Air Force General William R. Looney III, a decision on their recommendation to Mr. Bernard is expected within the next 3 months.

The 1st member of the board, Gil de Ferran, was selected last month in a paddock wide vote by all of the owners.

The members include:
  • Brian Barnhart: As president of competition and racing operations for the sanctioning Indy Racing League, Barnhart is responsible for development, innovation, safety development and implementation, medical, officials, technical specifications, event logistics and is an IZOD IndyCar Series representative on the board of directors of ACCUS, the U.S. representative to the FIA. Prior to joining the Indy Racing League, Barnhart served in various mechanical roles on Indy car race teams from 1982-94, including Galles Racing, Penske Racing and Patrick Racing and worked with legendary drivers A.J. Foyt, Al Unser Jr. and Emerson Fittipaldi.
  • Gil de Ferran: The 2003 Indianapolis 500 winner served as sporting director for the Honda Racing Formula One team. He formed de Ferran Motorsports in 2008 to compete in the American Le Mans Series as a driver/owner and now in the IZOD IndyCar Series through a partnership with Luczo Dragon Racing. De Ferran, who competed in CART/Champ Car and the IZOD IndyCar Series, became known as the "professor" because of his reputation as a technically astute driver. His technical feedback abilities and engineering background earned him vital development roles with all the major manufacturers instrumental in his career. De Ferran was elected to the advisory committee by his fellow team owners, while all other representatives were appointed.
  • Tony Purnell: Purnell is the former team principal of the Jaguar Racing Formula One team as well as a former Technical Consultant to the FIA. He is the founder of Pi Research. By the late 1990s, Purnell had built the company into a highly successful global electronics business. In 1999, the company was purchased by the Ford Motor Company and Purnell was appointed to head Ford's Premiere Performance Division, a role that was followed by his senior positions in Formula One. Purnell is a visiting professor at Cambridge University's Engineering Department.
  • Eddie Gossage: As a top promoter in sports, Gossage has made Texas Motor Speedway one of racing's premier venues. He was named vice president of the speedway in 1995 and charged with building the 158,000-seat complex located in the nation's fifth largest media market, Dallas/Fort Worth. He was named president of the facility in February of 2004. Gossage has promoted 20 IZOD IndyCar Series races at Texas Motor Speedway and was named the Indy Racing League's "Promoter of the Year" in 2001. Prior to his tenure at Texas, Gossage served as vice president of public relations at Charlotte Motor Speedway and manager of the motorsports division of Miller Brewing, overseeing its NASCAR, Indy car, sports cars and drag racing programs.
  • Neil Ressler: A former chairman of Jaguar Racing in Formula One, Ressler served various roles at the Ford Motor Company during his tenure, including senior research scientist, principal design engineer in the Suspension and Steering Division and director of quality and product systems before taking charge of core product development. Eventually he was named head of advanced vehicle technology, looking at the future development of the automobile. Ressler served as vice president and chief technical officer of research and vehicle technology with responsibilities for Advanced Vehicle Technology, Scientific Research and Environmental and Safety Engineering.
  • Tony Cotman: A two-time Indianapolis 500-winning team member, Cotman served as team manager for Team Green in CART in 1998, winning 11 races in three years. In 2001, he was promoted to vice president of racing operations, guiding a three-car program for Team Green and eventually a four-car program when the team became Andretti Green Racing and moved to the IZOD IndyCar Series. From 2005-07, Cotman served as vice president of operations and race director for the Champ Car World Series, where he oversaw the implementation of a new chassis. He served as the Indy Racing League's vice president of competition until 2009 before leaving to form NZR Consulting, focusing on race circuit design, safety and management. He continues to serve as a member of the FIA circuits commission and is still active in the league as race director for Firestone Indy Lights.
  • Rick Long: Beginning with the 1973 Indianapolis 500 in support of the Turbo Offy program, Long has been involved in the development of high-performance racing engines. His experience extends to the Turbo Cosworth, Judd and Turbo Buick engines used in Indy car competition. In 1996, Long and Herb Porter founded Speedway Engine Development, Inc. (SEDI), which served as the OEM builder for GM's Chevy and Buick engines in the IZOD IndyCar Series, controlling the selection of internal components as well as the tolerances used during assembly. Through a proactive program of applied development, dynamometer testing, and trackside support, the SEDI team "fine tuned" the engine to achieve the maximum potential for performance and reliability. Today, SEDI is the sole builder and supplier of engines to Firestone Indy Lights and also supports the engine programs of several USAC Sprint, Silver Crown and World of Outlaw teams.
"I feel that this advisory committee best represents a group of experts that encompass the key areas of car development, and I'm confident that they will do their best to come up with an objective recommendation on the future car that is in the best interest of the sport. Their goal is to keep in mind key attributes like safety, competition, industry-relevance and cost-containment while evaluating avenues for the future chassis and engine. This is one of the most important decisions the Indy Racing League will make this decade so I want to be sure we do our due diligence before committing to any future direction." - IRL CEO, Randy Bernard

Friday, April 9, 2010

Thursday, April 8, 2010

DeltaWing Test Results

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Last Tuesday the 2012 chassis contender from DeltaWing LLC underwent it's first wind tunnel testing in North Carolina. It reportedly performed very well, cutting the Aerodynamic drag by more than half from the current Dallara chassis.

“The test was a huge success and confirmed the trends of our advanced computational fluid dynamics modeling. We are very pleased that the results in the wind tunnel support our CFD findings. This is a critical step for the project and allows us to move forward towards a final design with the growing confidence gained from these results. We continue to believe that the car will respond on the race track as our simulations have predicted over the past 16 months. We are more convinced than ever that the DeltaWing concept will meet or exceed the parameters that the IZOD IndyCar Series has established for the 2012 chassis.

The test could not have gone any better. The Firestone tires were excellent and it is a testament to their advanced design and manufacturing technology that they were able to create these tires in such a compressed time frame. Firestone is a great partner to work with.” - Designer and Chief Technology Officer of DeltaWing LLC, Ben Bowlby

“Given the extensive aerodynamic data that we now have about the DeltaWing car, we believe that a 4 cylinder turbocharged engine with approximately 300 – 350 horsepower will meet the performance requirements of the IZOD IndyCar Series for the 2012 chassis, doing so with with only half the fuel consumption of today’s car. This is the engine design and displacement direction that the entire automobile industry is pursuing and we think it makes our car’s performance very relevant to the general public” - CEO of DeltaWing LLC, Dan Partel

Carpenter, Vision Return For Indy

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Today it was announced that Ed Carpenter and Vision racing will return to competition this May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in conjunction with Panther Racing. Using Vision chassis' and a Panther crew, Ed will pilot the #20 Dallara alongside Panther Racing teammate Dan Wheldon for his 6th run at the Borg Warner.

You can check out my updated Indianapolis 500 entries list HERE or by clicking the link on the right side of the screen.


"I am very pleased that we have this opportunity to partner with an excellent organization. This collaboration with Panther Racing will allow two teams that want nothing else but to compete and strive for success in the upcoming Indianapolis 500 the opportunity to do so to the best of their abilities. With this partnership between teams and drivers, we will also be able to maximize the potential of both parties and field what I am sure will be a very formidable two-car effort. There are close personal and professional relationships within our two organizations that should allow us to put forth a cohesive effort we will all be proud of and have high expectations for achieving results." - Vision Racing Owner, Tony George

"We looked at a lot of opportunities for the Month of May, and as strong as Vision Racing has run the last few years, we felt like partnering with them made a lot of sense for us. I feel that Ed (Carpenter) is a threat to win at any race he runs, and he?s proved that to this league in the last two or three years. His addition to the National Guard team along with Dan Wheldon is going to make our entire team stronger. I honestly hope this isn?t a one-and-done deal, and we very much look forward to the opportunity of expanding this and running more IZOD IndyCar Series races together this season." - Panther CEO & Owner, John Barnes

"I am very excited not only to be returning to the Indianapolis 500, but also working with Panther Racing. John Barnes has been a family friend for a long time, and I very grateful for this opportunity. I feel that with my experience, Vision Racing's experience and Panther Racing?s experience and success at Indianapolis that we will be a very competitive duo. It has been very hard watching from the sidelines so far this season, and I am very motivated to compete for my first win." - Ed Carpenter

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Dill, Newton Hired By IMS

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Just days after the IRL added talent to their public relations team, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is doing the same. Today it was announced that IMS has hired Mark Dill as VP of Marketing and Public Relations and James Newton as Director of Marketing.

Dill's background includes PR and Marketing positions with Blue Cross Blue Shield, Corvis Corp. and AT&T. A 1977 grad of Indiana University, Dill held a marketing position with Nortel from 1990-2001 and aided in activation for the company's Indianapolis 500 sponsorships from '96-'00 including the 1997 Arie Luyendyk winning entry.

Newton's past experience includes 9 years with Red Bull North America as a marketing manager and sampling team manager where he worked with IMS for the Red Bull Indianapolis MotoGP event.

“We’re pleased to welcome Mark and James to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway management team. Both bring an impressive array of experience, innovation and success in motorsports and other venues to the Speedway, and we’re confident that their talent and vision will provide excellent leadership in the vital areas of marketing and public relations.” - IMS Corp President and CEO

“I am excited and honored to be a part of the IMS team. As a lifelong fan of the Speedway, I have the perspective of both the fan sitting in the stands and the behind-the-scenes manager of corporate sponsorship and communication. Our mission at IMS is to not only expand our customer base but to make the IMS experience better than ever for our existing customers, and I look forward to being part of that.” - Mark Dill

“I have had the pleasure of working closely with IMS officials through Red Bull’s programs with the Indianapolis 500, Brickyard 400, Formula One and MotoGP. I look forward to taking the IMS experience to younger demographics while increasing customer service and satisfaction among our longtime fans.” - James Newton

Barber Entry Lists

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IZOD IndyCar Series 25 cars:
#2 Raphael Matos - Luczo Dragon Racing/de Ferran Motorsports
#3 Helio Castroneves - Team Penske
#4 Dan Wheldon - Panther Racing
#5 Takuma Sato - KV Racing Technology
#6 Ryan Briscoe - Team Penske
#7 Danica Patrick - Andretti Autosport
#8 E.J. Viso -KV Racing Technology
#9 Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#10 Dario Franchitti - Target Chip Ganassi Racing
#11 Tony Kanaan - Andretti Autosport
#12 Will Power - Verizon Team Penske
#14 Vitor Meira - A.J. Foyt Enterprises
#18 Milka Duno - Dale Coyne Racing
#19 Alex Lloyd - Dale Coyne Racing
#22 Justin Wilson -DRR
#24 Mike Conway -DRR
#26 Marco Andretti - Andretti Autosport
#32 Mario Moraes - KV Racing Technology
#34 Mario Romancini - Conquest Racing
#36 Bertrand Baguette - Conquest Racing
#37 Ryan Hunter-Reay -Andretti Autosport
#67 Graham Rahal - Sarah Fisher Racing
#77 Alex Tagliani -FAZZT Race Team
#78 Simona De Silvestro - HVM Racing
#06 Hideki Mutoh - NHL

Changes from St. Pete: Baguette/2nd Conquest added

Firestone Indy Lights 17 Cars:
#2 James Hinchcliffe - Team Moore Racing
#4 Carmen Jorda - Andersen Racing
#6 Junior Strous - HVM Racing
#7 J.K. Vernay - Sam Schmidt Motorsports
#10 Gustavo Yacaman - Cape Motorsports/Wayne Taylor Racing
#11 Pippa Mann - Sam Schmidt Motorsports
#18 Rodrigo Barbosa - PDM Racing
#22 Adrian Campos Jr. - Team Moore Racing
#26 Charlie Kimball - AFS Racing Andretti Autosport
#27 Martin Plowman - AFS Racing Andretti Autosport
#28 Stefan Wilson - Bryan Herta Autosport
#29 Sebastian Saavedra - Bryan Herta Autosport
#35 Nic LeDuc - Team PBIR
#37 Niall Quinn - Team PBIR
#40 Dan Clarke - Walker Racing
#49 Philip Major - Sam Schmidt Motorsports
#77 James Winslow - Sam Schmidt Motorsports

Changes from St. Pete: No Jan Heylen/Team E, LeDuc & Quinn with Team PBIR Added, Dan Clarke replaces Summerton at Walker

ZZ Top To Headline At IMS

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ZZ Top has signed on to headline the 2010 Indianapolis Motor Speedway Carb day concert. The legendary band that has recorded 14 albums will take to the stage at 3:30pm est just after the pit-stop challenge that ends at 3pm. The 2004 Rock & Roll hall of fame inductees are lead up by Billy Gibbons who waved the green flag for the Freedom 100 in 2003.

“Miller Lite Carb Day is all about excitement and a good time, and that’s exactly what ZZ Top delivers with its high-octane music. We’re thrilled to welcome the band to the Speedway for what promises to be a fantastic day for the fans.” - IMS Corp. President and CEO, Jeff Belskus

Make Your Pick

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The 3rd round of the 16th And Georgetown Fantasy League presented by the Indy Racing Experience is underway. Your selection for the Streets of St. Pete can be made HERE.

After two weeks, the standings are obviously very tight, with 4 players tied for 1st. The good news for Chris F, Corey A, Jason E, and Stephen K is that they correctly picked Will Power as the winner for both Brazil and St. Pete, bad news is, they can't use Will again. Best of luck to all, choose wisely.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Shunck, Todd Hired By IRL

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Steve Shunck, who has past experience working for Michigan International Speedway, ABC Sports, NASCAR, and CART has been hired by the Indy Racing League. In a restructuring of the IRL Public Relations and Communications department, Amy Konrath has been promoted to Vice President of Communications/PR and will serve as the head of the department and as the overall League Spokesperson.

Steve Shunck has accepted a new position as Vice President of Public Relations and will focus on advance work at key venues and be the liaison with Indy Racing League television broadcast team and the League marketing efforts.

Tracey Todd, has joined the team and will assist in a number of Communications department activities, in addition to her duties as assistant to Randy Bernard.

The incredibly sensational Dave Lewandowski and Arni Sribhen will remain with the department in their current roles.

 
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